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First Annual Report on the Beer, Wine and Spirits Producers’ Commitments to Reduce Harmful Drinking

Barry Neville

Barry Neville
Director of Policy, Public and Industry Affairs, SABMiller plc

At SABMiller we are proud to be a signatory company to the Beer, Wine and Spirits Producers’ Commitments to Reduce Harmful Drinking, a five-year initiative launched in January 2013.

The Commitments represent the most ambitious and comprehensive initiative that producers have ever undertaken together to address harmful drinking, building on our historic efforts in this area. Today the group released the first annual report on the progress we have made in their implementation, which you can read here.

2013 Report Cover Page

The report highlights the progress made by the signatories in 2013, during which we:

  • defined specific, measureable targets for all 10 action areas of the Commitments, which we report on here for the first time, and which will allow us to assess our progress going forward;
  • ran 135 education programs across the world, either individually or in partnership, aimed at preventing and reducing underage drinking. Together, these have directly engaged nearly 1 million young people under the legal purchase age in alcohol education programs and more than 500,000 parents, teachers, and community leaders;
  • through an analysis in seven countries we established that more than 96% of our advertising is compliant with our “70/30 rule” – in other words, that adults make up at least 70% of our advertisingaudiences;
  • found that none of the signatories’ products contained excessive quantities of stimulants (“excessive” defined both in terms of local laws and the available evidence from scientific research, peer-reviewed papers, and regulatory authorities); and
  • developed guiding principles for responsible digital marketing, which are now out for consultation.

Harmful drinking is a complex issue with many causes, and the solution must be similarly multifaceted. We believe that 2013 was a good first year, and one that made it clear that there is more work ahead for us as we deliver on the pledges that we made.

We remain guided in our efforts by the belief that all stakeholders have a role to play, and we are fully committed to doing our part. The report is one way in which we continue to hold ourselves accountable to a fully transparent, independently assured process.

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